James K.A. Smith


PhD, Villanova University, 1999,
MPhil, Institute for Christian Studies, 1995
BS, Emmaus Bible College, 1993
Undergraduate Studies, University of Waterloo, 1992-1993


James K.A. Smith is professor of philosophy at Calvin University and serves as editor in chief of Image journal, a quarterly devoted to “art, mystery, and faith.” Trained as a philosopher with a focus on contemporary French thought, Smith has expanded on that scholarly platform to become an engaged public intellectual and cultural critic. An award-winning author and widely-traveled speaker, he has emerged as a thought leader with a unique gift of translation, building bridges between the academy, society, and the church.

He is author of a number of books, including Who’s Afraid of Postmodernism? (2006), Desiring the Kingdom (2009), Imagining the Kingdom (2013), How (Not) To Be Secular: Reading Charles Taylor (2014), You Are What You Love: The Spiritual Power of Habit (2016), Awaiting the King: Reforming Public Theology (2017), On the Road with Saint Augustine (2019) and, most recently, The Nicene Option: An Incarnational Phenomenology (2021). He is currently at work on a book entitled When Are We? The Spirituality of Timekeeping.

His popular writing has appeared in magazines such as Christianity Today, Christian Century, and the Los Angeles Review of Books, as well as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and USA Today. Jamie and his wife, Deanna, have four adult children, and live in the Heritage Hill neighborhood of Grand Rapids where they attend Sherman Street Christian Reformed Church.


Website: http://www.jameskasmith.com

Twitter: @james_ka_smith

Academic interests

  • Philosophical Theology
  • Continental Philosophy
  • Hermeneutics
  • Postmodernism
  • Saint Augustine
  • Philosophy of the Social Sciences

Research and scholarship

James K.A. Smith is currently at work on a book entitled When Are We? The Spirituality of Timekeeping.


Selected Books

The Nicene Option: An Incarnational Phenomenology (Waco, TX: Baylor University Press, 2021)

Desiring the Kingdom: Worship, Worldview, and Cultural Formation, Cultural Liturgies, Volume 1 (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2009)

The Devil Reads Derrida: and Other Essays on the Church, the University, Politics, and the Arts (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2009)

After Modernity? Secularity, Globalization, and the Re-enchantment of the World, ed. James K.A. Smith (Waco, TX: Baylor University Press, 2008)

Hermeneutics at the Crossroads: Interpretation in Christian Perspective, eds. Kevin Vanhoozer, James K.A. Smith, and Bruce Ellis Benson, Indiana Series in Philosophy of Religion (Indiana University Press, 2006)

Jacques Derrida: Live Theory (London: Continuum, 2005)

Introducing Radical Orthodoxy: Mapping a Post-Secular Theology (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic Press, 2004) Spanish translation, forthcoming from Editorial Nuevo Inicio (Spain). Korean edition, forthcoming.

Recent Publications

"Reforming Public Theology: Two Kingdoms, or Two Cities?," Calvin Theological Journal 47 (2012): 122-137.

"Formation, Grace, and Pneumatology: Or, Where's the Spirit in Gregory's Augustine?," Journal of Religious Ethics 39 (2011): 556-569.

"Worldview, Sphere Sovereignty, and Desiring the Kingdom: A Guide for (Perplexed) Reformed Folk," Pro Rege 39.4 (June 2011): 15-24.

"The 'Ecclesial' Critique of Globalization: Rethinking the Questions," Faith and Economics 56 (Fall 2010): 5-20.

Professional associations

Smith serves as a Senior Fellow of Cardus, a think tank devoted to "the renewal of North American social architecture," for which he also serves as the editor of Comment magazine.


In 2015 Smith gave the Roberton Lectures at University of Glasgow and the Payton Lectures at Fuller Theological Seminary. In 2016 he will give the Bavinck Lecture in Kampen School of Theology in the Netherlands.


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